Monday, July 5, 2010
Big Orange Triangle
Just one week ago, my fabulous little 2002 Toyota Prius turned 90,000 miles. I have put all but about 13 miles in this baby and she has been serving me well. She shows a lot of wear and carries her age somewhat well. Sadly, as with all older cars things start to cost more to fix. She got new front brakes and refinished headlights so that thy aren't so dim. Thought that might be the extent of maintenance for a while and was happy for it. Sadly, I was wrong. Yesterday evening, as I was driving down the road to go workout, I got the dreaded big orange triangle. In prius terms it means "take the car to a dealer as quickly as possible". So I brought her home and parked her. Today, I took her to the dealership to be checked out. They got generic codes indicating a problem with the hybrid batteries. For those reading who don't know, this system has a separate bank of batteries to store a charge as a part of the hybrid system. It consists of a bank of batteries separate from the battery that is used to power headlights etc. They reside in the trunk. Anyway, when all is said and done, it looks as though it is the Electronic Control Units that regulate the charging of the hybrid batteries have failed. Unfortunately, the cost to replace those is in the neighborhood of $2,900. Less than the price tag for replacing the batteries, but still a hefty chunk of change. So, the big orange triangle is currently cleared but the little check engine light is on. Thursday, the parts should be at the dealership and the repairs will be done.